Peterborough’s Pearl Centre awarded Grade II listed building status

The Pearl Centre (now known as Lynch Wood Park), designed by Chapman Taylor as the Peterborough headquarters for Pearl Assurance upon its move out of London in 1992, has been awarded Grade II listed building status by Historic England.

Chapman Taylor won this commission in a design competition in 1987 and was asked to design a future-proof office building that was efficient and economical, could handle the latest technology and was able to adapt to organisational change and new technology. Pearl Assurance’s existing Holborn headquarters was out-of-date even before the final phase was completed.

Pearl required accommodation for 2,200 staff, mainly in open-plan flexible offices, a hall for a mainframe computer, a restaurant that could hold 600 people at a time, a training centre, parking for 1,500 cars and a single main entrance to maximise security.

The planning brief imposed a limit on the height of the new building because of its flat Fenland context, looked for a parkland setting and required traditional local materials to be used.

Chapman Taylor designed three square blocks of open-plan offices totalling 37,500m2 in area, each three storeys in height with a central, open-sided atrium, providing excellent views and abundant natural light. The development included an attached computer hall, a restaurant block, a training centre and two levels of underground car parking, all surrounded by landscaped gardens (designed by the late Professor Arnold Weddle).

Contemporary architectural journals praised the quality of craftsmanship and materials employed (Building, Architecture Today and Architects Journal). The Contemporary Arts Society worked with Pearl Developments and Chapman Taylor to select beautiful artworks for the buildings.

Construction began in June 1989, and the building was delivered in 1992. The building has more recently been sub-divided and let to other companies, with the building still thriving today.

In addition, the company’s war memorial, which was brought from London and placed within the landscaped grounds of the Pearl Centre, has received Grade II* listed status. The memorial, created in 1919 by Sir George James Frampton RA, honours the 659 Pearl Assurance employees who died in both world wars.

Adrian Griffiths (BA (Hons) Dip Arch RIBA MA Urban Design FRSA)

Group Board Director, UK

Adrian joined Chapman Taylor in 1986 and was promoted to the Group Board in 1998. As an architect and urban design specialist, he is recognised internationally for his expertise in the masterplanning of major complex mixed-use developments which are key drivers in the regeneration of our town and city centres.

Adrian is conscious of the fact that the developments we build today create the societies of tomorrow, recognising the responsibility the profession has in influencing the quality of people’s lives. He regularly speaks at conferences and prepares papers which promote the benefits of mixed-use developments as a sustainable model for the long term. Adrian leads the Concept Design Team in the UK.

Areas of expertise:

Urban design / Masterplanning / Mixed use / Retail / Leisure

Adrian entra a far parte di Chapman Taylor nel 1986 e si unisce al Main Board nel 1998. Come architetto e specialista in progettazione urbanistica, è conosciuto a livello internazionale per la sua esperienza nei masterplan di grandi complessi multi-funzionali, che sono i principali autori nella rigenerazione dei nostri centri urbani.

Adrian è consapevole del fatto che le zone di sviluppo urbano che oggi costruiamo creano le società di domani, riconoscendo la responsabilità che la professione ha nell'influenzare la qualità della vita delle persone. Adrian partecipa abitualmente a conferenze e scrive articoli che promuovono i benefici degli spazi multifunzionali come modello sostenibile a lungo termine. Adrian guida il Concept Design Team nel Regno Unito.

Aree di competenza:

Urban design / Masterplanning / Mixed use / Retail / Leisure

Adrian kam 1986 zu Chapman Taylor und wurde 1998 ins Main Board befördert. Als Architekt und Urban Design-Spezialist ist er international anerkannt für seine Expertise in der Masterplanung von komplexen Mischbebauungsvorhaben, die Schlüsselfaktoren bei der Regeneration unserer Stadt- und Ortszentren sind.

Adrian ist sich der Tatsache bewusst, dass die Bauvorhaben, die wir heute umsetzen, die Gesellschaft von morgen bilden und ist sich der Verantwortung unseres Berufs als Einfluss auf die Lebensqualität der Menschen bewusst. Er spricht auf Konferenzen und schreibt Abhandlungen über die Vorteile von Mischbebauungsvorhaben als langfristig nachhaltiges Modell. Adrian leitet das Konzept-Design-Team in Großbritannien.


Städtebau / Masterplanung / Mixed-Use / Einzelhandel / Freizeitbauten

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